Friday, June 21, 2013

S'mores - SOLAR OVEN FUN!

I made an executive decision on Monday to take part of Papa John's Monday night take out special - $6.00 large pizzas!  Heck, I needed the pizza (box) for a project and a night of no cooking was a total WIN!

This week I was determined the kids and I would learn about solar energy.  The kids are just sponges and they love to learn. especially when it involves their favorite foods pizza and chocolate!!!


First, we built a solar oven with our pizza box.  This was very easy to do.  Take a pizza box, place black paper on the bottom and line the sides with newspaper, you'll need to make a small cut out on the top of the box and tape clear plastic over the hole.  Add the tin foil and close the box tightly - a solar oven!  Now - just add food (graham crackers, chocolate and marshmallow).


What's a solar oven?  It's a box that collects sunlight and traps it inside the "oven" to create heat.  These get very hot as they sit in the sun.  They heat up enough cook a hot dog or puff up a marshmallow.  It works because the rays of light come in at an angle and hit the foil, it bounces to the opening of the box which is covered by plastic wrap and cannot escape.  The ray of light heats up the air that is trapped inside.  This is assisted by the black paper which can absorb the heat and the newspapers around the edge to act as an insulator.

The best time to use your solar oven is between 11am and 3pm on a sunny day.  It is always usually hot and sunny in South Central Texas.  The oven will get hot so be careful and use caution when touching the inside.  We opted to used a pie dish to keep the oven clean and allow re-use for additional projects (you will need to check back later for more blogs about our solar oven).



Place your solar oven towards the sun and wait....








It takes awhile so get comfy...you will be waiting and waiting and waiting. If you have children they will think this is an eternity.  They may in fact ask you no short of one thousand times if they are done yet.... and, you in turn will have to go and look at the box and explain that it still does not quite look done and that just maybe it might be a few minutes. 

 

And - a friendly pet reminder....even if they are drooling looking at the deliciousness cooking in the box ...chocolate is bad for pups....and I'm sure marshmallow isn't much better - ha!

 

Lesson (I) learned -- do not assemble with crackers on top it actually makes the cooking of the marshmallow to take longer.  Once I removed the top cracker it went faster...


It took about 15 minutes....but this was the deliciousness from our S'mores in the Solar Oven project: 



The kids had such a fun time assembling the solar oven and making s'mores!  I am currently working on finding some more amazing solar oven projects and will be linking them back to this blog so you can see our "solar oven fun".  

I hope you all enjoyed the project!  It's a quick and easy....fun and tasty....educational project for you to take part in this summer!!!  If you make them let me know how they come out! And, if you have a fun solar project we should try please let us know!



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